Monday, October 26, 2015

iPhone 6 can do 1080/60p!

I've had this phone for nearly a year and didn't know it could do 60 fps in 1080. LOL, I didn't even know it was an option because Apple buried it in settings. This is how you enable it.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Montour Trail- National Tunnel in Cecil Township, PA

Above is the result of a 5-stop pull in ACR! It's amazing that there was this much data in the shadows.

The top frame are my standard ACR settings, which are pretty much what you'd get SOOC. The bottom shows the settings for the pull. Still this isn't as good as a real HDR image but I think it's fine for low-rez instagram or web stuff.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Nikon D610 + 18-55mm VR II FX Mode

Here is a test of my D610 plus 18-55mm VR II in FX mode. It's easy to see that the corners are not great at or around 24mm. BUT it's not completely unserviceable... like who cares about the crap in the corners of the frame anyway. I took this combo with me short bicycling trip. This is the first time I've taken a DSLR with me on such a ride as they are too clunky and I am far more interested in cycling than landscape photography.

Anyway here is Fall on the Montour Trail. 

Thursday, October 8, 2015

100 mbps out of a Nikon DSLR!

Trying the 64 mbps hacked firmware on my D5200 and made the following observation-

93mbps peak bit rate! Incredible.
Recording duration is approximately 8.5 minutes and the camera wrote a 3.99 GB file.
HDMI Timeout is now disabled.
During the brick wall test I was NOT able to produce moire! *LOVE THIS*

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Eye Candy

The Nikkor 35mm f1.8G DX looks great on the little D3300. Handles pretty well too.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

GH1 + 50 f1.8

I'm liking the results from this combo. The Nikon 50mm f1.8 effectively becomes a 100mm lens and is a bit harder to manipulate but the results can be very rewarding. Again I used the EVF for all of these.

Monday, September 7, 2015

This camcorder CAN make portraits!

Here is a candid portrait of my son taken with a new to me Panasonic GH1. I'm surprised this old video camera can also take stills. XD

This sweet vintage camera will record 1080p for as long as the battery and memory lasts. New Nikon DSLRs can't do that! It also offers direct controls to most important functions, unlike my $800 "prosumer" Canon G20 camcorder which is a touchscreen nightmare.

Info on custom firmware can be found here- 75Mbps Peak Reliability Patch v2

Monday, August 31, 2015

Nikon hacks get a little better.

Just had a look at Nikon-Patch and found a few new tweaks for my D3200 and D610. Not sure if I missed the D3200 54mbps option but it's still nice surprise. The D610 BETA 54mbps HQ has been running without issue but keep in mind that if you install/select that option, you will lose in camera playback.

  • D3200 1.03
    • Multi-Language Support
    • Video 1080 HQ 36mbps Bit-rate
    • Video 1080 HQ 54mbps Bit-rate
    • Video 1080 HQ 36mbps Bit-rate NQ old HQ
    • Video 1080 HQ 54mbps Bit-rate NQ old HQ
    • BETA - Video 1080 HQ 64mbps Bit-rate NQ old HQ
  • D610 1.01
    • ALPHA - Multi-Language Support
    • BETA - Video 1080 HQ 36mbps Bit-rate NQ old HQ
    • BETA - Video 1080 HQ 54mbps Bit-rate NQ old HQ
    • BETA - Video 1080/720 HQ 64mbps Bit-rate NQ old HQ

Head over to for more info.

Update 9/29/2015

I gave the D610 1080/64mbps setting a go and it looks great. Below is a screen shot from Bitrate Viewer. ***Be warned that you will lose playback functionality with this hack. Also recording time will be knocked down to just ~8.5 minutes. 1080 NQ is still good for ~22 minutes.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Breaking the rules-

We all know you should never use a wide angle lens for headshots. Well, I think for this particular image created with my Panasonic 14mm f2.5 works quite well. I feel like I'm right there with my little guy. 

The one thing I love about photography is that all the rules are intended to be broken. There is no one good image  type, right/correct color, correct focal length... we throw out all those rules for the sake of creativity. 


Monday, March 23, 2015

A cure for the D7200 G.A.S.

I dragged my Nikon D610 plus little 50mm out to see if I could cure my D7200 G.A.S. We weren't going out to make portraits. This was just a woods walk so heavier lenses, lights and reflectors were left at home. Normally I only bring my iPhone or Galaxy Note on outings like this.

I'm always pleased with how this combo performs. It doesn't quite obliterate the backgrounds like the 85 and 135 do. It's an older optical design and IMO the backgrounds are rendered with a little less contrast than the new G lenses. I feel it's a tiny bit better for complicated scenes like this. 

Thursday, March 12, 2015

D7000 Hacked Video Firmware

Improved video quaility or longer recording times are possible with a hacked firmware.

The two linked pages below will get you started-

Wiki (how to)-
Patching Program (requires Silverlight not a virus)-

*Remember to download the proper firmware version from Nikon.
*It is possible to return your camera to stock by flashing the most current OEM firmware.

I selected to Remove Time Based Restrictions and the HQ 64mbps mode.

Here's a screenshot from Bitrate Viewer that shows D7000 footage peaking at 67mbps!

After the firmware update the following recording options are available. Please note all times are approximate.

720/24 NQ (5 mbps)- 59 minutes

720/24 HQ (8 mbps)- 42 minutes

720/30 HQ (10 mbps)- 39 minutes

1080/24 NQ (20 mbps)- 24 minutes

1080/24 HQ (64 mbps)- 8.5 minutes

Check back for 64mbps sample footage.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Nikon D7000 Film Simulation

Below are an example of Nikon Picture Control- Film Simulation. I do not know where these originated and I take no credit for making them. That said, I think they are pretty neat and can give your pictures a bit of creative pop or to improve the Nikon out of camera jpegs. I've used these on my Nikon D7000 but they should work on other models like the  D5100, D600 or better.

They are very easy to install on your camera and can be further customized to your tastes. 
  • They are not permanent.
  • They will not damage your camera.

Nikon D7000 Film Simulation

To install-
  1. Download this file
  2. Unzip and copy the contents to a camera formatted SD card. If done correctly you'll have the following files on your card-
                 DCIM (Folder)
                 NIKON (Folder)
                       - CUSTOMPC (Folder)
                                  PICCONXX.NCP  (15 Picture Control Files)
  3. Insert the card into your camera if needed.
  4. On the camera navigate to Menu- SHOOTING MENU- Manage Picture Control- Load/save- Copy to camera and follow the prompts for each film simulation you like to install. 
  5. If you did it correctly you will be able to select your new film mode though-  Menu- SHOOTING MENU- Set Picture Control. 
  6. If adjustment or customization is required follow the prompts in the Set Picture Control Menu. Alternately, Picture Controls can be edited in the Nikon Picture Control Utility desktop application. This software came with your camera. 
Most importantly HAVE FUN! 

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Panasonic GF1- Everything you need to know.

The Panasonic GF1 is one of my favorite cameras of all time. It doesn't do anything particularly well or better than any other camera, yet there is something about it that I love. Anyway, this post is intended to be a catch all for GF1 stuff.

GF1 Manual Video Hack / Video Quality Hack 

GF1 Firmware Hack-

I use the Reliable In-Camera Playback Patch v2 (GH1, GF1, G2). Details are on the page linked above.

How to find the shutter count on your Panasonic GF1. (GF1 Shutter Actuations)

  1. Put the camera in single shot mode.
  2. Make sure your camera is off.
  3. At the same time press "AF/AE Lock" and "Display" buttons together and hold them in.
  4. Turn on the camera and release the buttons after a few seconds.
  5. Press "Display", "Menu/Set" and "left arrow" at the same time, hold them in. 
  6. Now you should see a history of problem codes on the LCD.
  7. Press "Display" to switch between three different screens. 
  8. Look for codes-
  • PWRCNT # Times turn on
  • SHTCNT: # of pictures taken
  • STBCNT: # times flash was used